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The Donster
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How much should it be (about a ball park figure) that the Magician pays an assistant. Also is he/she required to pay for assistant's time for Rehearsals/Meetings to discuss the Show etc. D,
Brent McLeod
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If you get paid - pay your assistant a good percentage & make it fun!!
The Donster
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I'm not getting Paid but I do need a Assistant. It will be fun but how much do I pay and do I pay for rehearsal time as well?
Steven Steele
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I have paid my assistants in the past for rehearsal, but very few of them have been dependable. I no longer pay them for practice and rehearsal, but I also don't just take anybody who wants to be an assistant. I pay my assistants pretty well (a percentage of the contract price + a commission if they book the show) but every one of them own their own business and are successful in their own right. I am full-time, but my assistants are part-time and do it for fun.

Keep in mind, this works for ME. Other magicians may work it differently, but in the end there is no right answer. You have to determine what works right for you. All we can give is advice.
The Donster
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This is why I'm asking here and I appreciate the Help/Advice. what will be Reasonable to pay and what would be outrageous
Steven Steele
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I think answering your question is going to be very difficult. Is the assistant bringing any additional talent to the act, e.g. dancing? Then too, is the assistant just bringing props on and off stage or is the act a real team (ala Johnny Thompson). Also, the local economic conditions have a lot to do with it. There are areas were the difference in what you can get for a show can be significant. And in my case, those areas are only 30 miles apart. In the end, I think 'what is reasonable' is whatever you and your assistant agree on and both are happy in the end.
The Donster
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The Assistant will be Doing Metamorphosis with me. one of the ones I'm thinking of does have a Modeling/Dance etc with her background History and not to mention was at a school for the arts.
ibm_usa
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Quote:
On 2007-01-09 15:20, The Donster wrote:
I'm not getting Paid but I do need a Assistant. it will be fun but how much do I pay. and do I pay for rehearsal time as well ?

If you aren't getting paid then you can't pay your assistants. If you are worried about payment, go cheap and ask for a volunteer. or you could hire an assistant and if he or she is interested let her or him work one show for free and if she or he is willing to commit to the show, keep them and pay them.
"You may think that i only talk of things from the past, you know, history, well magic is history"

-Guy Jarrett

"Curiosity isn't a sin Harry, but it should be exorcised with great caution."

-Albus Dumbledore (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)
http://www.jordanallen-mentalist.webs.com/
ibm_usa
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Quote:
On 2007-01-09 22:55, Steven Steele wrote:
I think answering your question is going to be very difficult. Is the assistant bringing any additional talent to the act, e.g. dancing? Then too, is the assistant just bringing props on and off stage or is the act a real team (ala Johnny Thompson). Also, the local economic conditions have a lot to do with it. There are areas were the difference in what you can get for a show can be significant. And in my case, those areas are only 30 miles apart. In the end, I think 'what is reasonable' is whatever you and your assistant agree on and both are happy in the end.

Good point and a lesson to all. You should pay your employees but if they have some talent other then carrying objects, then pay them more for their talents. But the more employees you have, the more your going to have to charge to perform.
"You may think that i only talk of things from the past, you know, history, well magic is history"

-Guy Jarrett

"Curiosity isn't a sin Harry, but it should be exorcised with great caution."

-Albus Dumbledore (Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire)
http://www.jordanallen-mentalist.webs.com/
The Donster
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I've been paying people to help me bacause I can't find no one else to help or volunteer. I couldn't even find enough people to do a shoot.
fefe_fontane
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I'd love to talk to you more about your topic - message me if you are interested.
A.C.D
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Magician's Assistant~Actress~Dancer~Model
The Donster
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Fefe_fontane PMed you. D,
Big Daddy Cool
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Donster,

Many people may think I am crazy, but my assistants get paid as much as I do - and I use two. My assistants are feircely loyal to me, and can't wait to show up for practice, rehearsals, and production meetings.
Swing hard, swing often, and we'll catch ya on the Flip-Side!
"Big Daddy Cool"
Johnny Dellarocca
www.bigdaddycoolshows.com
The Donster
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Big Daddy Cool Most people Think I'm Crazy. a few days ago I had a Girl Back out on me. and she wanted $40.00 a Hour I was willing to pay it. and right now I'm in the Middle of hopefully I have another Assistant to help me and she'll be Costing me over $500.00 just to have her on stage for 8 minutes hopefully plus her time. for rehearsal travel etc. I wish there was a easy way to get/find a Assistant. if there is please contact me.
Big Daddy Cool
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Well, I would be curious about how you are going about it... $500 for a non-paying 8 minute gig is kind of steep. Not that she isn't worth it, but seems way out of the park unless you are in LA or Vegas - and even then the competition for work should make it easier to find someone more affordable. PM me about your search...

Posted: Aug 7, 2007 9:54am
UPDATE - What Donster didn't mention is that this girl is a PRO, and is flying in to help out. If it is who I think it is, then she is worth the money she is asking!

And, now that I know she will travel, I am going to hire her for gigs! You know who you are - PM me...
Swing hard, swing often, and we'll catch ya on the Flip-Side!
"Big Daddy Cool"
Johnny Dellarocca
www.bigdaddycoolshows.com
CMMAGIC
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I have a male asst ( illusion manager for backstage) and a female asst.
I pay my asst's 20 % of the booking rate plus take care of their hotel rooms and meals. We do around 100 shows per year for fairs , festivals , and church events.
- Carl Michael - www.CarlMichaelMagic.com
Frequent performer at top night clubs such as Mansion Miami , PURE Las Vegas , Marquee Vegas , and Veranda NYC . 2012 and 2013 Reader's Choice Magician of the Year. Currently headlining in my own stage show in Myrtle Beach . Follow on twitter , Instagram and ViNe @CMMAGIC
MagicMichealMan
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I pay my assistant $50 regular shows, but bigger ones $75

it is cheap, and one thing there is, I pay gas, I get the shows, I pay hotel,food,clothes, everything and take her to the conventions I go to so she gets a holiday. I too would say 100 shows a year, sometime less, sometimes more.

summers a HUGE season for me and fairs, and she HATES fair shows! she demanded more money! like more than I got, and Im out there the whole time and shes there for 4 tricks. I finally figured out one thing she hates more than fair shows and that's doing the same uncommfy illusions in the summer heat in impossible performances condictions, so I said to her, the more money I get, the better illusions we can afford to get rid of the old ones.

magic mike
Dr. Delusion
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Maybe I'm too nice. My assistant ( or assistant's, depending on the size of the show), and sound man, always make as much as I do. I can get away with that due to the fact that I have a day job and magic is just for fun and extra money. I have 4 girls I can choose from. All of them are in collage and the money from the shows is about the only extra money they have. There's been several times I've heard of one of them needing money so I will call them and have them help with a show that I would normally do myself, such as a Birthday party. There's been several times I've given them at least 80 % of what I made for the show. For me this has worked out really well. Hardly ever does one of the girls say no to a show. I've had one show up for a show with a cast on a broken wrist she suffered the night before playing a basketball game, another time a girl showed up with a walking boot on because she sprained her ankle earlier in the day at a soccer match. She had a tough time performing the Doll House and Zig Zag, but the crowd loved her for performing with the bad ankle !
Bob.
Big Daddy Cool
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Bob, I split net revenues equally. If I take more than anyone else it creates an immediate feeling of resentment.
Swing hard, swing often, and we'll catch ya on the Flip-Side!
"Big Daddy Cool"
Johnny Dellarocca
www.bigdaddycoolshows.com
Ray Pierce
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It's like saying "How much should I charge for my show?" If there aren't that many demands on the assistant you can get someone local and get a competitive rate. If you're asking for someone more specialized you spend more. If I need someone just to walk on and hand me something and basically "not trip" her value is not worth as much as someone who is a professional model/dancer and knows my show inside and out. You pay assistents what they are worth to you and if it's too little, you'll lose them, if it's ok, they'll stay around. Training costs you more in time than anything. I've had assistants around for years. I just call them up, tell them the date ad the show order and they show up knowing the show. That's worth a LOT!

I'm in Los Angeles and use some of the best performers around as assistants on stage with me so I might be paying $500 - $750 a piece for a one nighter, but they are dancers as well as assistants and it's a full show. If I'm doing more complicated shows or for TV dates it could go up depending on how good they were. I typically use professonal dancers even if no dance is involved as I don't have to teach them how to move and stand. I know they can get on and off smoothly and have the right lines to frame the scene. A pro knows how to frame you well then get out of the way for the magic. That's because they've had experience dancing with headliners in Vegas, on many other television shows and awards shows. Are they worth it to me? Of course!

That's on the real dates. Of course we don't always make what we want. On short money (or favored nation) dates like working the Castle, "It's Magic", "Masters of Illusion", etc. I'll divide the take among the cast members (myself included) with one extra part going to the company (Five of us in the cast = the take divided by 6). This has always seemed equitable since I incure the burden of trucking, props, costuming, other expenses, etc.

Like your props, get the best assitants you can afford and you'll look better!
Ray Pierce
<BR>www.HollywoodAerialArts.com
JimmyH
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Quote:
On 2009-04-02 13:00, Ray Pierce wrote:
It's like saying "How much should I charge for my show?" If there aren't that many demands on the assistant you can get someone local and get a competitive rate. If you're asking for someone more specialized you spend more. If I need someone just to walk on and hand me something and basically "not trip" her value is not worth as much as someone who is a professional model/dancer and knows my show inside and out. You pay assistents what they are worth to you and if it's too little, you'll lose them, if it's ok, they'll stay around. Training costs you more in time than anything. I've had assistants around for years. I just call them up, tell them the date ad the show order and they show up knowing the show. That's worth a LOT!

I'm in Los Angeles and use some of the best performers around as assistants on stage with me so I might be paying $500 - $750 a piece for a one nighter, but they are dancers as well as assistants and it's a full show. If I'm doing more complicated shows or for TV dates it could go up depending on how good they were. I typically use professonal dancers even if no dance is involved as I don't have to teach them how to move and stand. I know they can get on and off smoothly and have the right lines to frame the scene. A pro knows how to frame you well then get out of the way for the magic. That's because they've had experience dancing with headliners in Vegas, on many other television shows and awards shows. Are they worth it to me? Of course!

That's on the real dates. Of course we don't always make what we want. On short money (or favored nation) dates like working the Castle, "It's Magic", "Masters of Illusion", etc. I'll divide the take among the cast members (myself included) with one extra part going to the company (Five of us in the cast = the take divided by 6). This has always seemed equitable since I incure the burden of trucking, props, costuming, other expenses, etc.

Like your props, get the best assitants you can afford and you'll look better!


Words of Wisdom..Thanks for that Ray Smile
RodHousley
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You should pay your assistants and they should understand what they are being paid up front and be honest about it. Without your assistants what illusion would you do? You need to think about how important the illusion is to your show and pay them accordingly. I believe they should be paid hourly a dancers wage and paid for rehearsal time as well. Be professional about it and they will be professional for you. When you do things pro-bono, it is never as good as it could be.
Rachel
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As a hired assistant, I do more than just perform. I take care of a lot of bookings, and taking care of every little thing. Everything that my boss can't do, I do it.
There was a second assistant needed, so we asked another girl to step in. She asked for pay, and we told her that this would be her "audition", of course she did not continue with us, but it was for a benefit show, and she demanded pay.
The Donster
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I offer Pay Whether its for a Benefit or Not. I do want to be Fair and Honest with the assistant. plus having someone Helping means a Extra Person to get a Opinion from. and Rachel thank you for Joining The Magic Café.
cheeky
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Well it all depends, On what kind of contract do you have, If its a One Show, They charge high!
The Donster
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It won't be for a contract matbe a one show. but also to get to know the routine and to practice with.
griffindance
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Ok I havent read through most of the posts but I'll blunder on regardless.

For a good guide of rates of pay find a union website. Some publish their wage agreements online. Decide if you are paying 10% above or below that rate.
Another way to decide is based on percentage of the show income. Although profit share payment means that some people wont want to take the risk of learning a show for what may turn out to be a pittance.
As far as ongoing rehearsals decide how much time you are going to need. Any more than one hour (unpaid) prep-time per week or per show seems fine if only to make sure things are 'tight.'
kellaroneil
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Just always keep in mind that the assistant's time is worth something just like the performer's time. Ask yourself the question, could I perform this show without them? If you can't that makes them even more valuable.
msmagic1
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I agree. If you are getting paid, the assistant should also. I pay my assistants well..... and I NEVER have a hard time finding one available! You reap what you sow.
jugglestruck
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I pay my assistants enough to make them feel valuable and wanted. Pay then too little and you will rapidly lose their goodwill.
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